The Senate is Still Up For Grabs
Two Runoff Elections in Georgia Will Determine Who Controls the Senate
While we have all been mesmerized by Trump’s refusal to concede the election and cooperate with the transition, there is another melodrama going on in Georgia that should be taking center stage now that Biden has won the election. The success or failure of Biden’s agenda will be determined by the winners of two runoff elections in Georgia in January.
At stake are both Senate seats. No one won a clear majority in either race in November so the top two vote getters in each race will face off on January 5, 2021. If the Democrats win both seats, they will control the Senate with 50 votes plus VP Harris to cast the tie breaking votes.
A Democratic majority in both the House and the Senate means that Biden will be able to pass critical bills on economic relief, health care, immigration and climate change.
If the Democrats do not win both Georgia Senate seats, McConnell will continue to block all legislation. He likes to call himself the Grim Reaper where House bills go to die. There are currently 400 bills sitting on his desk that he refuses to put to a vote in the Senate.
The only way to break that logjam is with a Democratic Senate majority.
Biden won Georgia thanks to the efforts of Stacey Abrams. After she lost her 2018 bid for governor of Georgia in a race that was stolen by her Republican opponent, she turned her efforts to voter registration, especially of African Americans.
Thanks to her heroic efforts at voter registration and get out the vote, Biden won the state, the first Democrat to do so in over two decades. Now her attention has turned to the upcoming runoffs in January.
About that melodrama going on in these critical races.
Both Republican candidates who are the incumbents, Loeffler and Perdue, have called for the resignation of Georgia’s Secretary of State Brad Raffensberger, also a Republican, alleging voter fraud. They claim that he has refused to discard legal votes supposedly at the request of Lindsay Graham, Senator from South Carolina. Graham has denied urging Raffensberger to discard votes. Raffensberger has declined to resign.
A debate between the candidates in the runoffs has been scheduled for December 6. Loeffler and her opponent, Warnock have both agreed to debate. Perdue has declined to debate so his opponent, Ossoff, will debate with an empty podium.
This is not the first time that Perdue has refused to debate Ossoff. There were three debates scheduled before the November election. Perdue refused to participate in the last scheduled debate after a tough second debate. He chose instead to accompany Trump on a get out the vote campaign stop elsewhere in Georgia.
Perdue claims that the first two debates were sufficient. Ossoff says that Perdue is hiding because he called him a crook and accused him of downplaying the severity of COVID-19.
We all should really be paying more attention to these races if only for the entertainment value. But their importance is what should be commanding our attention.
The outcome of these two races won’t just determine who controls the Senate. The outcome will also determine what our lives and our world will look like for years to come.